Five Hilarious Places
What were these people thinking? When it comes to travel, I’m like a record – ya know – I really get around. As a lover of fine architecture and historic destinations, I find myself engrossed in the beauty of past cultures. I’m always taking pictures of monuments, buildings and statues throughout my travels, and keeping up this travel blog for all of you to keep up with my shenanigans. But if there’s one thing that will confuse me until the end of time it is when sculpture artists and architects from hundreds of years ago purposely make outrages works to importalize their time period in a confusing, provocative and sometimes down right hilarious manner. As a way to appreciate art, here are five of some of my favorite buildings, statues and monuments from around the world. I promise that after this post, you’ll never look at a statue the same way again.
1.) Die Alte Brücke: Heidelberg, Germany
Walk into the old city of Heidelberg via Die Alte Brücke and you’ll be greeted by Prince Elector Karl-Theodore, the man behind this stone bridgeäs construction. It was completed in 1788, making that approximately 223 years worth of people entering the city from the bridge seeing Karl touching himself. I would understand that if you stood at an obscure angle maybe you’d see something , but this is not from a weird angle. This is straight up whoever is entering the city via the bridge… which is almost everyone! There’s no way to avoid seeing Karl and his danger zone. What were the architects thinking and why did Karl just let this slide?!
2.) William Penn at City Hall: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
The legend of the statue of William Penn here in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is infamous. Before the construction of Philadelphia’s skyscrapers, nothing was allowed to be taller than William Penn, for it was believed that he was looking down and protecting the city that he founded and loved. It was known as the “gentlemen’s law”, a common courtesy to this city’s founder. When the law expired in 1984, the city was quick to construct two towers, One Liberty Place and Two Liberty Place, in Center City Philadelphia. Legend has it that William Penn was not happy about this, and because we love sports here in Philadelphia, the construction of these two towers cast a curse on all Philadelphia sports teams, leading to over 20 years of no team winning any championship EVER. But during the completion of Philadelphia’s current tallest tower, the Comcast Building, a sports fan placed a tiny statue of William Penn on the top during the final game of the World Series. A few moments later, as the story goes, the Phillies won the World Series, finally securing a championship for Philadelphia.
It’s a grand statue of a modest man, but if you stand at JFK Boulevard and look towards City Hall, you’ll notice that it looks like he holding his wang! Why, why would the artist who created this statue allow this to happen. For years and years worth of tourist giggles?!
3.) Rue de la Rape: Strasbourg, France
Nuff said – why would you name a road this? Especially in a city that is one of the major meeting places for the U.N. Rape better be something great in French, because I know it’s not in English.
4.) Ice Cream Buildings: Cologne, Germany
I scream, you scream we all scream for architecture! If they wanted to stand out, then they did a good job.
5.) Greyfriars Bobby Statue: Edinburgh, Scotland
It’s not that it’s the statue that is funny, it’s the story behind it’s consistent vandalism. Vandalism, you ask. The legend goes that Bobby was a dog who was the loyal companion of the old police officer who watched over Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh’s infamous graveyard. Naturally, due to the increasing cases of body snatchers, who would steal dead bodies in the name of science, they needed to employ a 24/7 surveillance to make sure no bodies were being dug up, abused or turned in for profits. Together, the police officer and his dog lived happily, until the day the officer passed away. Word on the street is that after he died, Bobby stayed by his grave for two years until he passed away himself. So after some years and a couple of Disney spoofs later, the story leaves us feeling warm and fuzzy knowing that dogs are a man’s best friend.
To commemorate the dog and his loyalty, they built a statue just outside of the graveyard. Originally, the statue was built facing the graveyard where his master lay so that he could always be watching over the grave. However, when the Greyfriars Bobby Bar and Restaurant came to town, the statue was mysteriously turned around, facing away from the graveyard. After a few furious mornings, waking up to see the statue facing in the wrong direction, the City of Edinburgh decided to leave the statue be.
Conveniently, when you take a photo of the Grefriars Bobby Statue, you are also getting a photo of the Greyfriars Bobby Bar and Restaurant. Think of all of the global marketing that they’re getting for free from tourists around the world taking pictures of the statue, while inadvertently taking a picture of their bar. Real sneaky Greyfriars Bobby Bar and Restaurant. You think you’re so slick.
This photo of Greyfriars Bobby Bar is courtesy of TripAdvisor
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